Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Rant Update and More Ranting

First off, I have to thank everyone who encouraged me to not white-knuckle the rest of the school year and instead get my son out of that nasty English class now.

I contacted the principal via e-mail that very day (Tuesday). He didn't get back to me until Thursday (I was about to barge into his office and break down his door if he didn't respond soon). I couldn't tell by his reply whether he was willing to work with me. One thing he asked was whether I'd been in contact with the teacher about the problem.

No, I hadn't. And I still have no plans to talk to her, because anything I'd say would be a personal attack. (Not a way to endear my son to her.) This isn't a matter of a teacher singling out a student or parent and teacher collaborating to find a way through a behavior problem. It's a matter of teacher incompetence and attitude. Talking to her would be tantamount to putting a target on my son's chest.

That, and I have no desire to make this work. I want my son out.

I responded to the principal, being firm--not just politely requesting a change. When I hadn't heard back the next day (Friday), I called him. He said he'd already contacted the academic counsellor to see what our transfer options were, but he hadn't heard back from her. He also wanted to talk with the teacher, but she'd taken a personal day on Friday.

Over the weekend, I decided to e-mail the academic counsellor myself. I know full well that there's another 8th grade English class with a good teacher the very same period, so if he transfers there, the rest of his schedule won't be disrupted.

She hasn't responded to the e-mail. I called her this morning, but got her voice mail. I left an urgent message, because this is getting obnoxious (it's been a week since my first contact!) and the term is moving on. I think the wheels are turning, but painfully slowly. I think I'll just show up at her office today, because it's harder to ignore a mother bear in person.

Second rant:
Our neighborhood constantly gets solicitors, whether it's for those teens supposedly making a life for themselves, lawn aeration, satellite TV, or a hundred other things. It's beyond annoying. The only people I'll buy stuff from are kids in my ward trying to raise money so they can participate in the high school football team or whatever. That's it.

Recently my husband bought a nice, pretty "No Soliciting" sign and stuck it to the center of the door. Yay! I thought our solicitor problems were over.

Not so.

Just yesterday, the doorbell rang in the afternoon. I assumed it was a kid's friend asking to play.

"Mom, it's some men asking to see you or Dad."


Before the sign, I was always polite to solicitors, possibly to a fault: "I'm so sorry, but I'm not interested. Good luck. Have a nice day."

But now I have a sign. They know not to bug me. I have no qualms about abandoning manners, because if they see the sign and insist on ringing the doorbell anyway, they're asking for it.

As soon as I saw their stances and their clipboards, I knew what was coming. I had an urge to reach out and smack them both. They began their little pitch, "Hi, we're with such-and-such landscaping company, and--"

I interrupted, pointing to the sign. "Sorry, no soliciting."

"Oh, we aren't soliciting," the guy on the right hurried to say. "We're just . . ."

"Drumming up business?" I asked.

"Um, yeah. But we're not soliciting."

(Do you know what soliciting means, moron?)

"Sorry, not interested." (I was a bit more clipped than usual, but not rude. Yet.)

At this point, guy #2 said with a rather snotty voice, "Do you have a problem?"

Hooo, boy. NOT the way to endear yourself to a potential customer. Any lingering inclination to be polite flew south.

"Yes, I have a problem," I snapped, not pointing out the sign a second time because apparently, as I said, they were morons. "I've got a really nasty headache. So yeah, I have a problem. Good-bye."

I shut the door. Kinda hard.

Their shocked and irritated voices came though from the other side.

And I didn't care.


Today's Tour Stops:

Crazy Lady on Road 80
(Where Jan gets dressed in period clothes for authenticity.)

Sunshine in My Soul
(One word: Giveaway)


Lara Neves said...

Man! I hope you get the English situation dealt with for once and for all today.

And I am so with you on solicitors. How annoying, and yes, they obviously don't know what soliciting means. Sheesh!

Sandra said...

Just an fyi about the school thing. Right now the counselors are doing registration for next year and high school visits with the 9th graders. I think you best option would be to talk to the registrar if your son's counselor is not in. And don't let the secretary tell you that the registrar can't help you because we do it all the time without the counselors.

I get so annoyed by the solicitations that I have it on my to do list to get a no soliciting sign. I asked a solicitor once, if he knew what soliciting meant. He told me, "I am not asking for s~x. Just selling _____." I just shut the door.

Heather Moore said...

I don't know about you, but I'm not too happy about strange men or women hanging out on my porch.

You guys are much nicer than I am. I just point to the "no soliciting" sign and stare at them until they leave.

I had a neighbor tell me that you can get the "no soliciting" signs at your local police station that have some code listed on it. If you have that sign, then it's technically "illegal" for a solicitor to knock on your door.

Kristina P. said...

So, something is going on with Reader, and it's not updating new blogs. I knew that having no new blogs to read for 90 minutes was too good to be true.

And I am very happy I am gone by 11:30. I can't remember the last time I had to deal with a solicitor.

Kimberly Vanderhorst said...

I want to leave a super supportive comment, but I'm too busy sniggering over the whole soliciting scene.


Carina said...

HE was rude to YOU?

He's lucky you didn't verbally eviscerate him. I know I would have. And then I would have made fun of him for not being able to read, or having the reading comprehension of a toddler...

You see where I'm going with all of that.

Shauna said...

I hear you! Hope you have a beautiful day! I am l♥ving your book I bought! ♥ HUGS ♥

Anonymous said...

AMEN SISTER!!! I can't believe that guy was rude to you?! Punk and a half! It's enough to make me understand people answering the door with shotguns. Okay, I don't really support that. But I think about it while I'm eyeing them down.

And like Azucar said He's lucky you didn't verbally eviscerate him. If anyone can do that, you can!

Crossing my fingers for you about the school thing!

Luisa Perkins said...

I see the real problem being that the majority of folks employed in such jobs don't know what the word 'soliciting' means.

Good for you for keeping at it regarding the incompetent teacher.

Heatherlyn said...

I feel sorry for solicitors. What an awful way to earn money. But I'm about to put a sign up myself.

You are doing the right thing trying to change your son's class now. If parents don't stick up for their kids no one else will.

Carolyn V. said...

Last time I had a solicitor at my door, I made him feel sorry for me! It was awesome! He shook my hand, said sorry, and left. If only I could do that every time.

Just SO said...

I hope that you are able to get him out of that class and that the school will work faster than they have been. I'm sorry the school isn't moving more quickly.

Cheryl said...

Oh, man. Stuff worth complaining about, indeed!

The English class thing sounds like one of those "why can't the kid just deal with it?" scenarios because of time/effort/etc. that they'd have to put forth to get it changed. And yet? It shouldn't be that hard, or a big deal.

I once put a "No Solicitors Over the Age of 14" on my door and that seemed to work really well! I don't mind doing pennies by the inch for the local Achievement Day Girls, but the magazine people drive me INSANE. Maybe if you put an age limit on it, they'll be better at getting the message?
More sighing (for your sake)...

Rebecca Irvine said...

Go Annette! I printed a sign out on my computer and laminated it. It has helped some, but I think there are too many morons who do not know what the word soliciting means.

Heffalump said...

I look forward to hearing the rest of what happens with the teacher switch.
We don't get too many solicitors. It sounds like you got a special breed of them that day!

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

I use to be nice to solicitors also...but they don't know when to be nice and accept that I am declining nicely...so now I just say NO and shut the door! :)

Sorry about the school business...that stinks!

An Ordinary Mom said...

I really hope you have been able to work out the English class switch. I am overly appalled at how long this process is taking?!?

And those solicitors are Morons with a capital "M."

Jenna said...

You go, girl. I want you on my team.

Emily M. said...

True confession: I sold pest control one summer. I was terrible at it. Really, really terrible at it.

But those "no soliciting" signs? We were instructed by our supervisors to ignore them and knock/ring anyway. It's standard procedure. All of our top salespeople _always_ ignored "no soliciting" signs.

Did I mention that I was not a top salesperson?

Melanie Jacobson said...

You go, Annette!

I find solicitors sooo frustrating, especially if I decline politely the first time, which I always do. After that, if they're still pushing me, all bets are off.

Jami said...

People are always harder to ignore in person, which is why showing up will probably help get your son in a better class. It's also likely the reason Mr. Landscape and Mr. Hardsell threw their manners to the wind and ignored your sign.

I love how strong you are!

Julie P said...

I put up a sign last summer that said "No soliciting unless you're a girl scout with thin mints." I should put it back up.

And GOOD FOR YOU for going to that principal. Do not give up.

Randi said...

I agree with you about going down to the school. Just plan to be there the whole day, so you can wait until they get out of their "meetings".

Summer said...

Wow, I can't believe that guy asked you if you had a problem. How rude!

Laura said...

I can laugh about the men at your door because it wasn't me. Ha ha.

I once had a Schwann's man beat on my door after I told him I didn't want to buy anything. He kept pounding on my door and yelling. I'd never even met the guy before that day. I thought about calling the police, but instead, I called the Schwann's company. They could hear him pounding on the door as we spoke.

Hmm. He never came to my house after that.

You're just like me with the polite-until-mother-bear-gets-her-claws-out. Yeah. Don't worry. Your son will thank you for being such a good mom.

Rachel Sue said...

Go you. On both counts. Especially the solicitors. Go you.

Brittany Marie said...

In our first house I took care of the solicitation problem by closing the gate (that went around the entire circumference of the lot) and buying a large dog. (She used to lay on our front porch.) It was quite effective against solicitors, but it was also effective against the mail being delivered.

I couldn't win.

Brittany Marie said...

*sigh*. I meant that the fence went around the entire circumference of the lot. Not the gate. LOL

Little GrumpyAngel said...

Amazing how our kids' education is supposed to be important and yet educators take so long to address problems. Hats off to you for persisting.


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